For this recipe you will need three 6-inch (15-cm) round cake pans, as the recipe is written for that amount of batter. However, this amount of batter will also make one 9-inch (24-cm) round cake for a nice single-layer cake if desired.
For the cake
- ¼ cup (45 g) palm shortening or ghee
- 4 large eggs
- 1 large egg white
- 1 cup (200 g) firmly packed maple sugar (I would think that coconut sugar would also work)
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 3½ cups (350 g) almond flour/meal
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¾ teaspoon ginger powder
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ cup (40 g) unsweetened shredded coconut
- ⅓ cup (50 g) raisins
- ⅓ cup (60 g) chopped pineapple
- ⅓ cup (40 g) chopped pecans
- 3 medium carrots (260 g), grated
- 1 recipe Swiss Meringue Buttercream (page 58 in the book or see below)
- 3 cups (170 g) coconut flakes, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 325°F (163°C). Grease and line the cake pans with parchment paper circles cut to fit the pans.
- Melt the shortening in a small saucepan over low heat, then set aside to cool. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the eggs, egg white, sugar, and lemon juice on medium-high speed for 15 minutes. The mixture should become thick and voluminous. Always beat it for the whole 15 minutes, though.
- While the egg mixture is beating, whisk together the flour, spices, and baking soda in a large bowl till blended. Add the shredded coconut, raisins, pineapple, pecans, carrots, and melted shortening, then toss to combine.
- When the egg mixture is ready, gently fold it into the flour mixture till completely incorporated. Divide the batter evenly among the prepared pans and bake for 30 to 35 minutes or till the tops spring back when gently pressed. (Bake for 35 to 40 minutes if using a 9-inch/24-cm round cake pan.)
- Remove from the oven and let cool in the pans for about 10 minutes. Loosen the edge of each cake with a sharp knife, then turn the cakes out onto a wire rack and let cool completely before frosting.
- To assemble: Place the first cake layer on a plate or cake stand. Spread about a ¼-inch (6-mm)-thick layer of buttercream evenly over the cake. Place the second cake layer on top of the buttercream, then spread more buttercream on top. Finally, place the last cake layer, then frost the top and sides of the cake with the remaining buttercream. You don’t need a super thick layer, but you want enough buttercream to press the coconut flakes into.
- Scoop up handfuls of coconut flakes and gently press them into and all over the surface of the cake.
- For best results, chill the cake, uncovered, for about 30 minutes to secure the coconut flakes. If needed, fill in gaps by placing a little frosting on the back of a coconut flake and secure it to the area.
- This recipe yields one three-layer (6-inch/15-cm) round cake (serving 12 to 15)